There is nothing better than being in the Bay Area in October.  The clear autumn days offer the perfect combination of sunshine and warmth and the mid-afternoon sunlight shining in the windows reminds me why I love living here.  Unfortunately, that same sunlight also reminds me of the amount of dust that is constantly surrounding us. 

You know the image: you glance up from your desk; the sunlight is shining through the window at just the right angle to display the millions of tiny particles floating peacefully through the air.  They are everywhere.  And they are unavoidable.

According to Wikipedia, one-third of the global land area is covered by dust-producing surfaces.  Dust particles found in home and office environments could contain small amounts of almost anything including plant pollen, animal dander, textile fibers, mold spores, bacteria, food particles, minerals from outdoor soil, human skin cells and even the remains of burnt meteors.

For the most part, the dust particles we see in the air are harmless.  However, those tiny microscopic particles are a primary cause of many allergies, hay fever and asthma.

Getting rid of airborne particles is nearly impossible.  But there are a few ways to limit the accumulation and movement of those particles:

  • Clean and dust regularly.  Use a wet cloth or microfiber cloth to capture dust.
  • If your work area is carpeted, it should be vacuumed at least 2 times per week.  Ensure HEPA filters are used in vacuum cleaners.  HEPA filters will trap particles and reduce the amount that is recirculated through the air.
  • Have ventilation systems cleaned.
  • Air filters should be checked and replaced frequently.
  • Open windows to keep fresh air moving through your space.

When you are evaluating a cleaning service or janitorial maintenance company, but sure to ask how they manage dust.  Even though total elimination of dust is impossible, regular cleaning can help reduce the amount of particles in the air.

Then you can go back to gazing out the window and enjoying the sunshine for a few more weeks.